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CHS soccer wins against pesky Diamond Bar

On paper it shouldn’t have been much of a fight. After all, Claremont, currently tied with Glendora for first place in the Palomares League, was playing at home against Diamond Bar, a team one spot out of the basement.

However, the Pack barely squeaked by the Brahmas, 1-0, on a chilly Wednesday night in Claremont.

But win Claremont did, bringing their record to 15-1-1, 4-0 in league, and setting up an epic battle on Friday when the Pack hosts Glendora, who is also undefeated in league.

Claremont certainly showed superior athleticism, particularly when setting up plays creating shots on goal. But, since soccer can be a quirky game, all that effort came to naught.

The only exception came at about the 35th minute of the first half. Catching a nice long throw-in directly in front of the Brahmas net, sophomore Sophie Jones tipped an easy pass to senior Mackenzie Boulware, who knocked it in.

The second half was a constant back and fourth with the Brahmas getting a couple of really good chances to tie, particularly on corner kicks. Special credit goes to Claremont’s goalkeeper Hollyn Carlton who successfully stopped every effort while demonstrating leadership as well.

Claremont sophomore Janelle Gutierrez had a couple of solid attempts on goal, including a heartbreaker with about five minutes to play that went high just over the net.

“Ladies we have to finish those,” called out Claremont Coach Tim Tracey, showing a bit of frustration at the missed opportunities. But the Brahmas, facing a superior opponent, clearly were willing to fight for every advantage.

Coach Tracey expected the match to be tough. “Everybody plays hard against us and will play hard against us,” he said. “It’s league and what they don’t have in size or athleticism that we have they are just going to play very hard against us.”

“The final part of the play just needs to be completed. We are getting the ball deep into our area, bringing it across well, we just have to finish those chances,” he said.

Friday’s game will mark the halfway point in league play, and if Claremont keeps up the pressure, they could be looking at stellar year.

“Yeah, we have had a good start to the season. We just have to continue to get the job done,” Coach Tracey said.

—Steven Felschundneff

steven@claremont-courier.com